We Live HERE Now...And We’re Having a Baby!
Over two years ago, we shared that we were going to try out life in Portland , OR for a bit. Well, a lot has changed since, and it feels like time to close out this blog with a final update (for now anyway…)
When we bought the RV that came to be known as Betty, she was the definition of freedom. One small monthly payment that covered our housing and transportation. The ability to go pretty much anywhere that roads could take us. Being at home everywhere we went, from mountaintops, deserts, beaches, and forests, to parking lots and driveways of family and friends. We traveled to and through over 40 states. We went to 14 national parks (an average of 1 per month) and countless lesser known places of incredible natural beauty. We got to learn more about this country and the people in it. And we got to learn a lot about ourselves.
If you followed along on our journey, you know that after 14 months full time in Betty, we needed a break. So we decided to try out living in one of our favorite parts of the country, the Pacific Northwest. And Portland was the clear choice: it’s one of those places that gives you all the benefits of living in a city while feeling like a small town, it’s incredibly easy to get out into nature, and it’s full of people every bit as weird as us, which makes us feel deeply at home.
The longer we were here, the more we knew this was a place we wanted to spend some real time and put down roots. Which is funny, because all but 4 months of our life here have been during a global pandemic. We’ve had to navigate social isolation, professional uncertainty, and health challenges. We’ve struggled to meet people and find community. But through it all, this place has still felt like home.
So we decided to listen to that feeling.
The more we rooted into Portland, the more our relationship with Betty changed. She was the dream we’d lived out to the fullest, while new dreams were taking shape. Dreams of settling into a home without wheels. Dreams of starting a family.
And as Betty sat in our driveway, accruing an ever growing number of maintenance costs, we wondered if it was financially responsible to buy a house and keep her. We wondered if it made sense to–to have “must be able to accommodate a 25’ RV” in our list of criteria for our future home. And, while we 1000% want life on the road to be a part of our future and the family we build, we wondered if Betty would even be the right vehicle for that.
Ultimately, we realized that holding onto Betty was holding onto the past. This time around, freedom would be letting go.
The good news: apparently COVID made life on the road a whole lot more popular. While we were ready to move on from road life, more people than ever were opting into it, and we found Betty a new home, one where she could do what she does best: be a true vehicle for adventure.
But of course, we couldn’t do that without giving her a proper goodbye!! Here are some scenes from Betty’s last hoorah at Crater Lake National Park:
Saying goodbye to Betty was HARD. She was a part of our family. She represented a way of life that we deeply love. She made so much possible, changing who we are individually and as a team forever. And yet, through all the many challenges of letting go, it always felt right.
On June 25, 2021, Betty moved on to her next adventure. And we moved on to ours.
These days, life looks pretty different.
We’ve dreamt of having a baby for years, and now we’re just about a month away from bringing a new human being into the world. We’re beyond excited and grateful and also holding LOTS of other emotions. If there’s one lesson we’ve learned time and again, it’s that living our dreams isn’t easy. From the fertility journey to a deeply challenging first half of pregnancy, the joy we’re holding now in the final weeks is inseparable from the challenges of getting here. And we know that all that comes next will be equally filled with joy and challenge as well.
We’ve dreamt of putting down roots in this place that we love, and here we are: living in a house (without wheels) that we own in Southeast Portland. Again, it’s been a journey. Buying a house and moving with Rachel growing a human and running her own business and Mat adjusting to the new job he started over the summer and his new role as partner to a pregnant person has been a lot of change all at once. Plus, global supply chain issues has made furnishing particularly interesting. And again, we feel deeply lucky. It’s all slowly coming together. With each day, with each new project, with each person who comes to visit, it begins to feel more like home.
So here we are. Homeowners. Soon to be parents. Former RVers (for now).
This post has been a long time coming, but there’s been a lot of life going on, and we needed some real time and space before we were ready to write it.
To all of you who’ve been with us on this crazy journey, thank you. We feel your support and encouragement as we continue in this next adventure.